On This Day…

Prohibition Begins

January 17, 1920

The 18th Amendment goes into effect. While it did not prohibit the consumption of alcohol, it did ban the sale, manufacture, and transportation of alcoholic beverages. The Volstead Act, which defined the terms used in the 18th Amendment, defined an intoxicating liquor as any beverage containing more than 0.5 percent alcohol. This caused beer and wine to also be prohibited.
The 18th Amendment was repealed in 1933 by the 21st Amendment.